MANY Brits will have trouble falling asleep at some point in their lives.
In some cases, persistent pain might what's stopping them from reaching the land of the nod.
According to Dr Deborah Lee, from Dr Fox Online Pharmacy, pain appearing at night is of the most common cancer symptoms people can suffer from.
She told The Mirror that while it's important to note pain doesn't necessarily mean someone has cancer, there are some tell-tale signs which could indicate it is caused by the disease.
She said: "One of the signs that pain may be due to cancer is pain that is worse at night, as well as pain that is not related to trauma."
You might be in much more discomfort at night because cancer grows more rapidly during this time, the doctor said.
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"When you lie down, this changes the weight distribution of the tumour and surrounding tissues, [potentially causing pain]," Dr Lee went on.
While pain alone might not necessarily indicate you have cancer, there are other symptoms to watch out for, according to Dr Lee, such as:
- loss of appetite
- weight loss
- tiredness and fatigue
- nausea and vomiting
She advised anyone experiencing unexplained aching anywhere in their body for three weeks or more to speak to their GP about it.
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"It may well have an innocent explanation, but you need to have a proper assessment," Dr Lee explained.
What causes cancer pain?
Most cancer pain is caused by the tumour pressing on bones, nerves or other organs in the body.
Sometimes it'll be due to your cancer treatment.
For example, some chemotherapy drugs can cause numbness and tingling in your hands and feet or they might cause a burning sensation at the spot where you have the drug injection.
The amount of pain you experience if you have cancer can depend on the type of disease you have, where the cancer is located and what stage it's at, and whether the cancer or treatment has damaged any nerves,according to Cancer Research UK.
There are various different types of pain, the charity said, affecting the nerves, soft tissues or bones and each will feel different.
It's also possible to experience pain in a different part of the body from the area that's afflicted, which is called referred pain.
For example, a swollen liver may cause pain in the right shoulder, organ presses on nerves that end in the shoulder.
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